One of the incidental effects of the conclusions drawn by the Education Select Committee inquiry into the Trojan Hoax allegations, is the further exposure of establishment propagandist, Andrew Gilligan’s deceit and anti-Muslim bigotry. His last piece attacking a Muslim head teacher at Small Heath School, in Birmingham, on the most spurious of grounds continued the now officially disproven “takeover” theme. His one-sided diatribe was comprehensively exposed on this blog.
The blog was written prior to the publication of the Ofsted report. However, the report for the school has now been revealed, and so has the extent of Gilligan’s proliferation of lies and spin designed to discredit the Muslim head teacher at Small Heath School. It is time revisit his anti-Muslim propaganda.
Gilligan wrote that the school was to be placed into special measures “as fears grow of a resurgence of the ‘Trojan Horse’ plot”. As already mentioned, the Select Committee found no evidence of a plot; the sentence amounts to nothing more than fear-mongering.
He then informs his readers twice that, inspectors had found a “narrowing of the curriculum”. I stated in my previous exposition of Gilligan’s inaccuracies that,
“My sources close to the school state that they are unaware of changes which have been made since Peter Slough has left.”
Therefore the claim that the curriculum had been narrowed was false, for if it was judged narrow, then it should have been judged similarly under the previous “secular” (as Gilligan’s likes to inform us) head. The Ofsted report completely contrasts with Gilligan’s false, regurgitated claim:
“The breadth of the curriculum is a strength of the school. It prepares students well for life in modern Britain.”
“The school’s well-balanced curriculum, including for religious education, ensures that students develop a strong respect and tolerance for others of diverse backgrounds, faiths and beliefs. Discrimination is not tolerated in any form.”
Not exactly the “narrowing of curriculum” Gilligan falsely led his readers to believe.
Gilligan quotes an unnamed source stating that standards under the new head “have been slipping”. This is of course after we are told that under the angelic, “secular” Peter Slough, the school was judged “outstanding”; “a rating it had held for many years” Gilligan gloats. Placed together, alongside the tenuous character assassination, it misleads the reader into thinking that the new head is solely to blame for the falling standards.
With regards to the slipping standards, I have addressed this issue in my previous blog. I highlighted that these were slipping prior to the arrival of the new Muslim head teacher, a point missed by the ever-objective Gilligan. This has also been noted in the Ofsted report, which states,
“Students’ achievement has declined substantially since the last inspection in May 2013” [Peter Slough left in 2014]
“GCSE results have fallen for two years.”
“Students’ progress to GCSE has declined particularly sharply over two years in mathematics.”
Perhaps the “outstanding” rating was maintained due to Slough’s “contacts” within Ofsted.
With regards to the head teacher, the Ofsted report notes the dissatisfaction of the teachers with her excessively “managerial style”. My sources have confirmed that a large number of teachers are in fact not happy with approach the head has been taking. The report, however, contrary to the picture Gilligan has drawn, which misleads the reader into pinning the blame of the fall of standards on the new head, to an extent exonerates her:
“The headteacher has nonetheless correctly evaluated shortcomings in achievement and accurately identified weaknesses in the school’s systems of accountability for students’ progress.”
In fact, one of the recommendations in the report reads,
“strengthening systems for measuring performance which hold staff and leaders clearly and equitably to account for students’ progress across the school.”
In other words, the new heads efforts have been in-line with the Inspector’s recommendation.
It is also worth noting that in my previous blog I wrote that,
“The head teacher has also, according to my sources, made the marking of books a priority, which again has not been popular with some vocal teachers. Ironically, I am told that inadequate book marking was raised by Ofsted too. Only the publication of the Ofsted report can confirm this latter point however.”
With the publication of the report now comes the corroboration of what I had stated. According to Ofsted,
“there are also numerous examples of books which have not been marked for many months,”
“Students’ homework planners suggest that homework is not regularly set in all subjects”.
The fact that Gilligan crafts the blame of the fall in standards upon the new head teacher is, frankly, an abhorrent aberration from reality.
As for the rest of Gilligan’s Goebbels-esque tripe, I have dealt with the barren claims in the aforementioned previous blog.
A core function of journalism is to be a safeguard of the people from state excesses. It is a form of free speech which embodies the moral duty to act as a mechanism to ensure government accountability. Where a journalist eschews this moral obligation, and becomes a mouthpiece of the state, whitewashing actions of the government whilst exaggerating, spinning and manipulating facts mixed with lies against a minority “other”, the consequences, as Nazi Germany, the Germany Democratic Republic and the McCarthy-era US demonstrate, can be catastrophic.
Part of responsible journalism is to ensure accuracy of information, and objectivity, the latter of which seems impossible to achieve in today’s era, where parts of the major corporate media outlets have effectively merged with the government officials and their personal, warped neoconservative agendas. It can be achieved if the overarching aim is recalled.
Gilligan though, is a dangerous propagandist. Not a journalist. His actions resemble the propaganda of those who were eventually held complicit to the genocide of the Jews in the Nuremberg trials. It is little wonder then, that he has been identified by the US think-tank, Center for American Progress, as an individual who exhibits demonization tactics notoriously similar to those employed by American counterparts of the “transatlantic network of hate”.
Gilligan needs to be held accountable for his anti-Muslim, inaccurate and heavily spun propaganda.